Sunday April 9 2017
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Soccer: Dribbling to Penetrate

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Being able to dribble is one of the most important skills a soccer player can possess. As players' dribbling skills improve, so will their confidence and enjoyment in playing soccer. Shielding the ball and getting in behind defenders is vital to being a good soccer player.

Make sure young players get lots of touches on the ball; the more comfortable they are handling the ball, the better they will be able to dribble. Have them move the ball from one foot to the other, using both the inside and outside of the foot.

Rather than trying to master a variety of moves right away, work on one or two moves that will get the player past the defender: scissors moves, double scissors, etc.

Getting Behind the Defender
Look to attack the space BEHIND the defender. This forces the defender to turn and chase the player controlling the ball.

Accelerate after you have thrown the move and can get in behind defender.

Field of Vision
We always mention to players about keeping their heads up – but they must also be able to see the ball. Have another player stand five yards in front of the player with the ball. Now get the player with the ball to look at the knees of the other player. They now have peripheral vision of the surroundings (where the other players are in the near vicinity), but also can see the ball to better control it.

Once they are behind and away from the defender, and have space to dribble with little pressure, they can look up and see the field.

Fake-Out Drills
Below are some drills that will help players become better and more deceptive when possessing the ball.

Reverse: The player stands behind the ball and rolls the ball three times with the sole of the foot back and forth. On the third time the player pulls the ball behind them and turns around, keeping themselves facing the ball.

Slice: The player stands behind the ball and passes the right foot over the ball, slicing it in half, and steps beside the ball with the right foot. The player then uses the outside of the left foot to push the ball in the other direction.

Zig-zag: The player stands behind the ball and pushes the ball with the laces of the right foot to the right side. The player then stops the ball and steps beside it with the right foot, and uses the outside of the left foot to push the ball in the other direction.